Project Management

How I Used Project Management To Excel In Life

How I Used Project Management To Excel In Life
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The aim of the article is to discuss how we can apply project management techniques and principles to create a personal roadmap while incorporating the notions of happiness and success as primary targets in all areas of our lives.

The key principle is that we can create project management style plans to manage our life more efficiently, which could then lead to greater satisfaction, happiness, and overall well-being while also combating frustration and anxiety.

Using Project Management To Put Your Life In Perspective

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As a business executive, author, athlete, and adventurer, I have had the chance to reflect on incorporating project management principles across all areas of my life. This has afforded me many successes, opportunities, and inner satisfaction which I have sustained, despite times of tragedy, disappointment, and unemployment.

With this in mind, I hope to challenge you to consider a new approach or perspective to your life by creating a scoped life roadmap, reconsidering your definitions of success and happiness, and then applying a proven, sustainable approach to manage each personal project you have.

By putting your plans in writing, even the smallest ideas become projects and can then be more easily linked together and built on for even greater success. In any case, remember that you define your own goals, your own happiness, and success, for that matter.

As such, make sure you do a health check on your roadmap to ensure you are staying on track but, most of all, that you are satisfied with the direction in which you are going.

Life Is A Collection Of Projects

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When you think about it, life is a collection of projects (or goals) which take us through the various stages of our existence, from childhood to adulthood to retirement. We learn at a very young age to have dreams, set goals, and plan in order to get the most out of life.

What if you were to map your collection of personal and professional projects in a roadmap-type format where you could then put things in perspective, while also planning for the future?

With this in mind, you would:

1) Define what each project consists of (scope management)

2) Identify how long each will or should last (time management)

3) Define what success looks like (quality management)

4) Identify events which could happen and jeopardize your goal (risk management)

You could then take this further by:

5) Identifying the resources needed for each project (resource management)

6) Calculating the budget (cost management)

7) Acquiring the required materials (procurement management)

Since the human element is very important, you would also:

8) Try to fully understand the people or organizations with whom you will need to interface (stakeholder management)

9) Identify the best way in which you will interface with each one (communications management)

Finally, you would then bring all of these moving parts together, resolve any potential conflicts among competing resources or activities which may include making concessions (integration management).

With this high level tour of the 10 project management areas, you are now ready to begin the process!

Everyone Is A Project Manager

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Without knowing it, most people are actually applying project management principles to their everyday lives.

When we set up our budgets, set and track our goals, as well as measure our success, we are project managing our lives to a certain extent.

By framing my life in this way, I feel like it has greatly helped me put mundane tasks such as planning and budgeting into perspective, thus reducing the emotional strain of reacting to my life so that I am actually proactively managing it.

But the main benefit for me is to have my roadmap on paper! I am then able to revisit my roadmap to see which activities or goals may need to be adjusted, rethought, or completely overhauled.

The Premises Of A Project Life Roadmap

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By creating a personalized project life roadmap, you have already made the first step in perfecting your project management skills while hopefully providing yourself with a more laser-like focus to identify and achieve your goals.

As such, the targets and projects I add to my roadmap are scoped in such a way so as to provide me with the best chance of achieving my goals. I definitely input stretch targets along the way so as to provide myself with certain challenges as well as the opportunity to recover from potential failure, using techniques such as lessons learned evaluations.

Success then would be the positive outcomes experienced, no matter how small in nature. Even the smallest successes are very good for the psyche and should always be celebrated!

You can build this roadmap at any point in your life so it is never too late to start!

Man on laptop enjoys summer while working full time

There you are: sitting on the beach, covered in sunscreen, reading your favorite book, drinking your favorite drink under the cool shade of an umbrella. Life doesn't get any better than this. Suddenly, a door slams, a phone rings, a printer turns on. You jolt back into consciousness. You're at work, sitting in your cubicle, without even a hint of sunshine streaming in from outside.

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